James Lee Rizik
09/08/1950 - 02/21/2023
James (Jim) Lee Rizik, 72, of Newnan GA passed away unexpectedly on Tuesday February 21st 2023 after suffering a ruptured aorta dissection.
He was born September 8th 1950 in Osaka, Japan to Albert Callaway and Reiko Fujita. His name at birth was Yoichi Fujita / Jimmy Lee Callaway. He was adopted at age three by his parents, George Rizik and Marguerite McElroy and moved to the United States.
Jim was a lifelong learner and pursued education at various institutions. He attended the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma WA, De Anza Community College, Tacoma Community College, and Linfield University. He obtained several degrees and certificates, including a BA in Liberal Arts from the University of Puget Sound, an AS in Health Sciences from De Anza and certification from the RCA Government Services Training Program.
In highschool he was well known for his many artistic talents and athleticism. He played football, ran track, sang in the school's chorus and enjoyed drawing. He even drew and designed the cover of the yearbook for his senior year. Growing up in a military family he often moved and was well traveled and cultured. At a young age he had already been to numerous countries and knew the basics of languages such as German and French.
He served in the US Air Force as an Air Traffic Controller during the Vietnam War, earning himself a Bronze Star, Silver Star, and Purple Heart. He went on to work as a Logistics Manager for General Electric in Cape Canaveral, Florida and General Motors in Flint, Michigan and most recently as a Distribution Center Manager at Yamaha Motor Mfg. Co. where he retired.
While in Cape Canaveral, he witnessed the takeoff and explosion of the Space Shuttle Challenger, and while working in California as a tailor and valet at a hotel he had met many celebrities.
James Lee Rizik was a loving and devoted father and grandfather. He loved spending time with his family and was always willing to lend a helping hand or offer a smile to those who needed it. Although a quiet individual, his love shone brightly through his actions and humor. Those who knew him, knew him best for his sense of humor and silliness. He had a gift for making anyone laugh and would respond in kind with a hearty chuckle and a twinkle in his eye. He was fiercely protective, especially of his daughters, whom he was immensely proud of. He would lay his life down for his children without a second thought and give them anything and everything he could within his means. He was a hard worker and provider. He went above and beyond in all that he did.
He had an intense passion for health and wellness, history and sciences. He could most often be found reading, or singing while playing piano or guitar. Other hobbies included drawing, painting, horticulture, going on hikes, working out, and studying natural medicine. He was a very artistic and talented individual with a wide variety of interests.
Jim will be dearly missed by his family, friends, and all who had the pleasure of knowing him. He leaves behind a legacy of love, laughter, strength, and a thirst for knowledge and wellness that will continue to inspire others for generations to come.
He is survived by his longtime girlfriend Teresa Eye, his four daughters Chandre’ Rizik, Ariahne’ Rizik, Brienne’ Rizik, and Zabrina Hobbs, his granddaughter Hanoka, stepson Scott Breiding, mother Marguerite McElroy, and his siblings Suzanne Callaway, Lisa Callaway, Bill Callaway, Albert G. Callaway, Peggy Avery, Judy Blazevich, Linda Bishop, Vickie Garlock, and Michael Beauchene, and countless nieces, nephews and cousins.
He is preceded in death by his father George, his brothers Gregory Rizik and Robert Toy, his birth parents and his cat Kiera.
In lieu of a funeral service there will be a Veterans honor ceremony that will be held at a later date. Family and friends are encouraged to attend.